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Series: Change and Transition
Sermon: Called to Something New
Text: Genesis 12:1-3
Rev. Audrey Spencer
Introduction: Read Genesis 12:1-3. God tells Abram to leave his land, family and father’s household for the land that I will show you. Let’s look back at another Bible character who was asked to leave. God called Moses to leave his home and go plea with Pharaoh to release the Hebrews from slavery. Both men were asked by God to go. Both men felt they were not qualified.
Excuses: Moses had all the excuses as to why he was not to be the one to help save the Hebrews. Who am I? What will they say? What if they don’t believe that you sent me? I can’t speak well. And finally, can’t you send someone else? New journeys can be overwhelming and daunting. Have you felt the lump in your throat when you’re considering a big change? What has God called you to do that you feel like you aren’t qualified to do? Or maybe you play “Let’s Make A Deal” with God. When the time is right I’ll do it. The kids aren’t old enough; I’m not old enough; I’m too old; when my finances are better; I’m just too busy. What we’re really saying is “I’m afraid.”
Factor God in our calculations: Remember who God is and what he promises. A wise mentor of mine told me once that God does not call us to something that we can accomplish on our own. What would be the point? No. God calls us to do things that we cannot do on our own. He wants us to depend on Him. To be obedient. New journeys teach us to rely on God and to remind us that God is always with us. Joshua 1:9, “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Let Go: From the Book, “Let Go”, Matt Miofsky states, “In order for change, growth, moving forward, or to begin a new journey, first we have to leave.” We have to be willing to step away from something if we are ever going to experience something new. When we say yes to a God nudge when immediately face the challenge of leaving. And this is where so many new journeys STOP! We become uncertain and feel inadequate. Yet, to get “there” we must leave “here”. A new journey, a new beginning that God has all planned out for us begins with a departure. And that first step is the hardest.
We want to play it safe: After 40 years of praying the Israelites were within reach of the promised land and they said, “never mind”. Does this sound familiar? It’s easy to imagine something new. It’s easy to look over the fence at a new reality and say, “I wish I had that.” It’s easy to pray for something new; to hope for new things. But change is not easy at all. It’s costly, it’s hard, and it’s scary. But wishing never changes anything. Change only occurs when we take the first step and make a change happen. Just like Abram and Moses, we can only move forward when we let go. Let go of the comfortable, familiar home.
Conclusion: God continues to call us to take new steps. To step in the water and work with him to make the change. He’s never finished with us and how he can us to glorify Him. The scary part is He usually doesn’t show us what the future will look like before we leave the familiar behind. What is God calling you to do for Him that you feel anxious or inadequate about? What is God calling this church to do that may feel scary and new for us? Trust in the Lord and His promises!